8 of the Best Healthy Salad Dressing Brands
By Anne Bliss
How to pick a healthy salad dressing & healthy salad dressing nutrition.
"I recently started buying Maple Grove Farms of Vermont, the Champagne Vinegrette to fill the void when I just don't feel up to making my salad dressings... 11 ingredients and the only thing I see really questionable is the Xanthan Gum,...
Bottled salad dressings can be (nearly) as healthy as homemade—or they can drown your salad in added sugars, fake flavor and color enhancers. Don’t be swayed by a healthy-sounding name or pretty bottle—it doesn’t always reflect what’s inside.
We scrutinized more than 40 bottles of supermarket salad dressings to see if they met our nutrition criteria. Only these 8 made the cut; the others were eliminated for containing too much sodium, sugar and/or undesirable ingredients, such as synthetic colorings. We didn't taste these—just vetted their ingredients—so if you find that one of these dressings tastes great (or if you discover another "better choice" on the shelves), let us know in the Comments section.
Here’s how to find a healthy dressing:
Look for: extra-virgin olive oil or canola oil, short ingredient list
Watch out for:
- Sodium. Pick one with <300 mg sodium per 2-tablespoon serving
- Sugar (especially in fruit-flavored dressings). Choose one that has either no sugar, HFCS, REB A (stevia) in the ingredients list or a sweetener that appears near the bottom of the list. Aim to keep total sugars at <3 g per 2-tablespoon serving.
- Synthetic food colors, such as Yellow 5 & 6, and also caramel color, in the news recently as a potential carcinogen.
8 Better Vinaigrettes to Pick:
1. Annie’s Organic Balsamic Vinaigrette
2. Kraft Zesty Italian
3. Newman’s Own Balsamic Vinaigrette
4. Lily’s Balsamic Vinaigrette
5. Drew’s Classic Italian
6. Newman’s Own Lite Italian
7. Wish-Bone Light Italian
8. Ken’s Light Options Olive Oil & Vinegar